Ford to use graphene sound deadening for F-150, Mustangby Justin King
The 'miracle material' will help reduce road and engine noise in the cabin.
Ford has announced plans to use graphene in upcoming production vehicles, starting with the F-150.The so-called "miracle material" generated headlines more than a decade ago but has only slowly transitioned from the lab to products. Formed of single layers of hexagonal graphite lattice, graphene is 200 times stronger than steel and extremely conductive.Ford has been exploring potential applications for the innovative material. The company has found that graphene significantly improves the performance of sound-dampening foam used throughout most vehicles."The breakthrough here is not in the material, but in how we are using it," says Ford's senior technical leader of emerging materials, Debbie Mielewski. "We are able to use a very small amount, less than a half percent, to help us achieve significant enhancements in durability, sound resistance and weight reduction - applications that others have not focused on."Despite holding only trace amounts of graphene, the foam is said to improve sound absorption by 17 percent, enhance mechanical properties by 20 percent and improve heat endurance by 30 percent.The material will be used for at least 10 underhood components starting by the end of this year. Following its integration in the F-150, the foam will be used for the Mustang and eventually other models.